Genomic Analysis of Burkholderia And Rhodococcus equi Bacteriophages
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Recently there has been an increase in bacterial infections that are resistant to traditional antibiotics. With this upward trend of resistance, many scientists are turning to alternative treatments like phage therapeutics. In this report there is discussion of isolating and characterizing novel phages of Rhodococcus equi and Burkholderia cenocepacia. Burkholderia cenocepacia is part of the Burkholderia cepacia complex (BCC), which causes pulmonary infections in cystic fibrosis patients (10). Rhodococcus equi is an intracellular pathogen which invades the macrophages of immunocompromised individuals such as young foals. While phylogenetically R. equi, a Gram-positive bacterium, and Burkholderia, Gram-negative bacteria, are unrelated, they both occupy the same ecological niche as soil saprophytes. Therefore, it is possible to isolate novel phages from the soil for both of these bacteria. Using a soil enrichment procedure, it has been possible to isolate and amplify 12 novel R. equi bacteriophages. These bacteriophages all appear to have the same morphologies as siphophages and similar genome sizes. Five of the R. equi phage genomes were pooled together with iv other bacteriophages and pyrosequenced using 454 LifeSciences Technology. These phages are mosaic and sequencing traditional plasmid libraries were sufficient to deconvolute the 454 data. Also reported is the complete genomic sequencing of BcepNY3, a Burkholderia cenocepacia bacteriophage via a Whole Genome Shotgun Approach. BcepNY3’s 47,382 bp genome was found to encode 70 proteins and 1 tRNA. It was determined that BcepNY3 is part of the previously described Bcep781 family of phages (26). Surprisingly, it is also related to the Xanthomonas oryzae phage OP2, and proposed in this report is a possible evolutionary connection between OP2 and the Bcep781 family of phages.
Orchard II, Robert C. (2011). Genomic Analysis of Burkholderia And Rhodococcus equi Bacteriophages. Available electronically from